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    Satisfaction as a key antecedent for word of mouth and an essential mediator for service quality and brand trust in international education
    Positive word of mouth in the form of recommendations and referrals is the most effective way to recruit new students. The purpose of this study was to determine how service quality, parental satisfaction, and brand trust affect the likelihood of parents recommending their child’s international school to family and friends and to test the mediating effect of parent satisfaction. The study developed a contextually relevant and reliable survey to measure the perception of 458 Generation X parents at The International School of Macao. Scale items from the literature were contextualized for education. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to confirm convergent and discriminant validity. Structural equation modeling was used to determine the relationships. It was found that parent satisfaction had the biggest influence on the likelihood of parents recommending their child’s international school by word of mouth. While the service quality that parents experience and the trust that they have in the school brand had an impact on satisfaction, it was found that parent satisfaction fully mediates the relationship between service quality and word of mouth as well as the relationship between brand trust and word of mouth. Schools must ensure that current parents are satisfied to cultivate positive word of mouth through recommendations and referrals to prospective parents. Previous studies have demonstrated the mediating role of satisfaction, but no significant studies have empirically tested the same in K-12 international contexts. The study contributes to the existing field of knowledge by providing support to the contention that satisfaction mediates the relationships between service quality, brand trust, and word of mouth.
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    A Prototype Instrument for Measuring Service Quality by Generation X Parents: A Case Study at the International School of Macao
    This quantitative research aimed to advance the use of the service quality construct to measure the perceived service quality of K-12 international schools by Generation X parents. It proposed an approach that contextualised previously published scale items for private healthcare into educationally relevant scale items. The revised scale items were developed and confirmed through an Item Objective Congruence Test (IOC) by industry experts. The instrument was tested for reliability through a pilot test and then administered to 499 parents in a school. The results used Exploratory Factor Analysis (EFA) to reduce the complexity of the standard 5 service quality (SERQUAL) factors into 3 factors: Responsibility, Assurance and Professionalism, Empathy and Facilities which accounted for 65% of the variance of the SERVQUAL variables amongst Generation X parents at The International School of Macao. The revised instrument can be used to effectively measure parents’ perception of service quality in an international school setting.
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    Validation of a Research Instrument to Measure Generation Y Parents’ Perception of Service Quality and Effect on Satisfaction and Word of Mouth in International Schools
    This quantitative research aimed to (1) validate an adapted instrument used for measuring service quality in private hospitals to measure the perceived service quality of K-12 international schools and (2) implement the instrument to assess service quality’s impact on word of mouth and satisfaction. It was necessary to contextualize the scale items through item objective congruence test using industry experts. Scale items were adjusted to reflect the service provided by teachers, staff, and leadership of the school. The resulting 27 scale items for service quality were shown to be contextually valid and internally reliable. The instrument was then implemented to measure parental service quality’s effect satisfaction and word of mouth. The survey was piloted by 33 parents and verified for internal consistency before being administered to 422 Generation Y parents. The results showed that the modified instrument was reliable and valid. The results showed that service quality had a direct and positive effect on both satisfaction and word of mouth but it had a greater effect on satisfaction.
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    Motivational factors influencing telework during the COVID-19 pandemic
    During the COVID-19 pandemic, teleworking has proven to be an effective countermeasure to overcome the spread of this disease while enabling businesses to continue. However, little is known about the extent of their adjustment to daily life routine, interaction among self-control, assignments, family life matters, and coordination with colleagues. This study explores the impact of motivational factors on the performance of teleworkers. An exploratory study was conducted using an in-depth interview with 27 interviewees who work in Thailand and have more than a year of experience switching between being a teleworker and working on-site. The NVivo and SPSS software were performed to reveal deeper data insights and apply non-parametric tests in order to compare findings with various demographic profiles. The findings revealed that environment, time management, and reward are the strongest motivational factors, whereas labour intensity and job security present the weakest relationships with teleworkers’ performance. Numerous implications and strategies to enhance their performance for both organizations and workers are provided. Firms can support a well-prepared environment and manage the flexibility of working time to increase employees’ effectiveness. Moreover, the result-oriented approach can be one of the tools in evaluating their performance rather than attending to their full working time at home.